I am a Ph.D. Candidate and Connaught Scholar in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Toronto. 

I do research in social and political philosophy of language with a (Peircean) pragmatist approach. My dissertation is overseen by Cheryl Misak (supervisor), Joseph Heath, Nate Charlow, and Brendan de Kenessey.

I am especially interested in communication that is strategic, indirect, subtle, and nonverbal.  This includes propaganda, political dogwhistling, implicature, insinuation, connotation, euphemism, inside jokes, hinting, and all manner of linguistic discourse such as prosody, register, genre, and modality. I'm also interested in how we use social norms to convey and interpret these kinds of utterances.

In addition to philosophy I have a passion for issues surrounding mental health and disability. During the pandemic I trained as a peer counsellor and helped found our department's inaugural Mental Health & Disability Caucus, receiving a Graduate Student Service Award for my work in this role. 

Before attending the University of Toronto I received a B.A. in Philosophy with Honors and a minor in Physics from the University of Tennessee.

Contact me at kristen.beard@mail.utoronto.ca